Home > President opens RADE's cultural showcase.

Connolly, Johnny (2007) President opens RADE's cultural showcase. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 22, Summer 2007, p. 5.

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RADE (recovery through art, drama and education) was established in August 2004 as an innovative programme for recovering drug users. Its purpose is to help participants ‘find a path forward into personal development and education through participation in the arts’.1 At present, there are 21 participants involved in the arts training programmes which are conducted in collaboration with some of Ireland’s leading contemporary artists across all art forms.

President Mary McAleese opened RADE’s 2007 Showcase in the Project Arts Centre in Temple Bar in April.  The president was introduced by poet Theo Dorgan, who was MC for the evening. The event opened with poetry readings from Mick (Elegy for Uncle Christy) and Joanne (Nobody knows what it’s like). This was followed by a short documentary film, a Tai Chi display and a drama performance by the participants.

President McAleese set the activities and challenges faced by the participants in RADE in the context of the harms associated with problematic drug use: ‘Civic society is generally impatient with addicts, frustrated at the waste of life, angry at the damage inflicted on the self and others. Families, friends and partners often reach exhaustion point too, so it is all the more important that there is an organisation like RADE that doesn’t walk away defeated or overwhelmed by the enormity of the job.’2  Directing her comments at the participants throughout her address, she commended them for their courage in taking on their addiction: ‘It takes guts to take on the monster within that is addiction, and the works showcased here speak movingly of the courage and the commitment it has taken each artist to get here. When they took the first steps towards this day they were in an altogether different place – they were in many ways different people. Today they are stronger and wiser. They are men and women of achievement, people of substance not substance abusers.’

RADE has three primary objectives:

  • to get Dublin City Council to develop RADE’s current ‘dilapidated’ premises in New Street, Dublin 8, as a state-of-the-art centre, or to provide suitable alternative premises;
  • to develop and expand its drama and film programmes;
  • to increase the reach of its programmes into the community and to involve influential community forces, such as parents, more directly in its work.

1.       RADE (recovery through art, drama and education) (2007) Somewhere to flap your wings – Inside RADE 2006–2007. Dublin: RADE.

2.       The full text of President McAleese’s remarks at the RADE Showcase is available in the Speeches section of the website http://www.president.ie/speeches/

Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Intervention Type
Issue Title
Issue 22, Summer 2007
April 2007
Page Range
p. 5
Health Research Board
Issue 22, Summer 2007
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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